Quick Bites: Kale, Kale the Gang’s All Here for Green Smoothies

Ready to turn over a new leaf (pun intended)? Then a green smoothie might be just the solution for you. Dark green, leafy vegetables pack a powerful nutritional punch and can help guard against a number of chronic illnesses, so bust out the blender and get your serving of veggies

Greens are high in fiber and vitamins A, C and K. The nutrients in greens may help slow the effects of aging and help prevent cancer and eye problems like cataracts. Bonus: the calcium in some greens can help protect women from bone-thinning osteoporosis. Extra bonus: the potassium in greens helps regulate blood pressure, and the B-vitamin folate, which you need unless you want to be vulnerable to heart disease and stroke.

If your salad days are over, grab your blender and follow this formula for smoothie success!

It’s best to use greens right away, but they can be stored in the refrigerator as long as they are used within a few days. Before using greens, remove any wilted or discolored leaves. Clean  by dunking them in a bowl or a sink full of tepid water a few times.

Step 1 — Choose one of your favorite greens:
2 cups of spinach
1 cup of kale
¾ cup of raw broccoli
1 small head of bibb or Boston lettuce
½ head of romaine

Step 2 — Pick two of these fruit favorites:
1 cup grapes
1 sliced and seeded apple 
1 peeled orange
1 cup sliced pineapple
1 cup berries
1 peeled banana
1 cup peeled and sliced mango
2 stalks of celery
1 peeled kiwi
1 cup sliced peaches
1 sliced and seeded pear

Step 3 — Choose a liquid:
1 cup soy, almond or coconut milk
1 cup fruit juice
1 cup coconut water
1 cup 2 percent plain yogurt
1 cup water

First put the liquid in a blender, then add the soft ingredients and finally the firmer ones. Add one cup of ice. Secure the lid and slowly increase speed until mixture is well blended. Enjoy immediately.